I Don’t Have to Take That…

You don’t have to take that, or anything from anybody. But what does “not taking that” look like?

Throwing a punch or a fit when things do not turn out as expected? Walking away from people who no longer support you? Calling out the folks who say and do things that disturb you? Setting clear boundaries? Holding fast to your values in such a way that everyone knows where you stand? Being inflexible? Facing difficult conversations? Or letting it go?

People tend to say the words “I don’t have to take that…” with anger and frustrationbecause they accepted a way of being far too long. When boundaries at home, work, or within an organization are unclear, people figure them out through trial and error. With the trial and error method, however, no one really knows which error will lead to a complete breakdown in communication. Rather than speaking up clearly and compassionately to clarify needs, folks sometimes choose the short-term benefit (false comfort) of non-confrontation over the long-term benefit (slight discomfort) of an authentic conversation. Once the boundary or trust has been impeded, it may not take long for either to fully break. Broken boundaries and broken trust create damage which may seem irreparable.

When do you decide you are no longer going to take it? Does the other person have any advance indication from you? A constructive conversation before the break may prevent irreparable damage and actually restore or improve the relationship.

Mediation and conflict coaching provide space to speak your truth, consider needs, and create ideas for resolution.

A civil and family mediator, peace builder, and educator, Sherry Ann Bruckner lives in Alexandria, Minnesota. Visit brucknermediation.com/services to learn more or call Sherry at (320) 808-3212 for help to transform conflict and create peace.

As always, be gentle with you. Be gentle with all. Be the peace.